There are times when we rush. We’ve fallen behind or made the most common mistake of overbooking. It’s ok. It happens! Some people can handle moving from one activity to another with very little time to rest or recharge. They thrive on busy, busy, busy; however, they also are usually the ones that can’t sit still, so busy works for them. It’s just who they are. They aren’t “trying”.
Most people; however, need space in between engagements to relax and re-energize to continue throughout the day without collapse. I’m one of those people and I finally sat down and put “not rushing” on my Absolute No List. I have five absolute no items that are on the list and I’ll do whatever necessary to make certain I do not let them make an appearance. No rushing is number one on that list!
A most important warning is unless you’re hard wired like the busy bodies mentioned above, too many days booked to capacity may lead to burnout. Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It occurs when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and unable to meet constant demands. As the stress continues, you begin to lose the interest and motivation that led you to take on a certain role in the first place.
If you find you’re rushing because you seem to be too busy most days, it’s a good idea to take some time to reflect and consider if your time management is working for you or not. Are there certain times of day or the week that you’re expecting to do too much in too little time? See where your day or week blows up and ask if it all the to-dos are vital to be done on a specific day or if you could migrate that job for another day that isn’t as slammed.
Here are a few suggestions to consider that may help you slow down and enjoy your day more. I have built these three approaches into planning my days and let me say, I’ve reduced my rushing to under 10% of the time and that’s a ginormous improvement for me!
“Once she stopped rushing through life, she was amazed how much more life she had time for.” ~ Author Unknown
- Everything is not urgent. Give yourself a break and stop marking everything you do as “urgent”. This may help take the pressure off any unreasonable deadlines you may have set.
If you struggle with this, enlist the help of a friend who seems to balance their schedules well and radiate a sense of fulfillment and don’t appear stressed out or agitated. They may be able to help you identify what is truly urgent, set reasonable deadlines and pass on what needs to be delegated or eliminated. This helps when you believe it’s all important.
- It may be hard but schedule less and give yourself more time for each task and in-between. More time to get dressed. More time to get organized with what you need to gather the tools to get the job done. More time for traffic. More time helps us move at a relaxed pace and feels so very nice!
It may seem like you’re wasting time in the beginning, but you’ll be surprised how much more relaxed you are. I’ve found I use my time better because I’ve scheduled less and limited the time for each task, but I’ve given it my full attention. It gets done with more focus and usually much more efficiently in less time than I predicted!
- Give yourself a break. You can’t do EVERYTHING, so stop expecting as much from your day! Expectations are typically set too high and cause undue stress trying to meet them.
After you’ve generated your list of to-dos for the week, start planting them on days that suit your deadlines. It’s unnecessary pressure and unrealistic to try to do more than three urgent tasks in a day. One may require most of the day so plan this item according to time availability for that day or week. As your week takes shape, you may see days that are overloaded. Try to modify these days to make the week more balanced.
Life can be enjoyed much more when we feel like the most important things are receiving attention, including our own well-being. It’s making sure we don’t overcommit to too many things because there’s no way humanly possible to give our priorities the amount of attention they need to thrive when we overbook. It’s at that time we may have to say goodbye to our least important commitments, if only momentarily. Life keeps changing and so will our priorities. Nothing is carved in stone. So, move and change with the what your life requires at that moment. And enjoy!
Keep it Simple,